Top Ten

January 8, 2018

UWindsor acting students take self-defense courses to prepare for work in entertainment industry

A group of acting students at the University of Windsor say that they have taken self-defence classes and intimacy workshops to help prepare for the unwanted advances that they expect to encounter once they enter the entertainment industry. CBC reports that these students are responding in part to widespread allegations of sexual harassment and assault that have recently emerged in the industry. “It's terrifying honestly, being in this industry as a woman is terrifying,” said second-year UWindsor student Sarah Hagarty. “Knowing that these things are tolerated and in certain scenarios are encouraged is absolutely terrifying.” CBC

Letter shows that CBU laid out the impact of new NS funding formula to province

Documents released earlier this week have revealed that Cape Breton University made clear to government officials the impact that changes in the provincial funding formula have had on the school. The Cape Breton Post reports that CBU and Acadia University were the only universities to lose funding under the changed formula, but it was also revealed last year that Acadia had received $24.8M in extra funding above and beyond its grant following the funding formula changes, while CBU's portion of provincial funding dropped from 6.99% to 5.6%. “While we have been very diligent in attempting to balance our budgets, we have had no choice but to run operating deficits the last number of years,” wrote Interim CBU President Dale Keefe in a letter to Labour and Advanced Education Minister Labi Kousoulis dated September 19th, 2017. Cape Breton Post

Students more likely to challenge, expect favours from female professors: study

Female professors face far more demands from students to give extensions, boost grades, and be more lenient on classroom policies than their male peers, according to a new study. Based at Eastern Washington University, the study found that standard policies like not sending PowerPoint slides to students, denying retests, and not including extra credit or grade-boosting projects are more likely to be met with irritation or persistent arguing from students when they are enforced by female professors. “I always found it odd that students would sometimes have emotional responses to me simply enforcing my own policy, and I always wondered why that was,” said Amani El-Alayli, a psychology professor at Eastern Washington and the study's lead author. “Students wouldn't take no as an answer … I always suspected that gender could play a role, and it seems that maybe it does.” CBC

Conestoga sees 10% jump in students seeking counselling

Conestoga College has seen a 10% increase in counselling appointments while working with the Canadian Mental Health Association to offer additional mental health services for students. The institution and the CMHA have partnered on a pilot project since May 2017 to offer enhanced mental health support for students. CBC reports that the program, known as Here 24/7, has been offering its call-in services and walk-in counselling sessions during the evenings since early December at the school's Doon campus. “Our college students this fall endured a strike and they are a few weeks behind in their curriculum and playing catch up right now,” said Helen Fishburn, senior director of services at CMHA Waterloo-Wellington. “That adds another layer of stress for them so we are pleased at this particular time to be able to go in a provide additional support to the student services team.” CBC

How open-source textbooks can save students millions: Jhangiani

Open-access textbooks offer an opportunity to help PSE students with a growing financial burden, writes Kwantlen Polytechnic University Psychology Instructor Rajiv Jhangiani. The author notes that the cost of textbooks has risen by 1,041% since 1977, and that textbooks can now cost anywhere between $50 and $450 for a single course, accounting for up to 40% postsecondary student's educational costs. The author adds, however, that more than 42 BC educational institutions have adopted open textbooks over the past five years, saving students roughly $5.5M. Jhangiani credits much of this success to BCcampus, the agency charged with leading the BC Open Textbook project. Globe and Mail

Social media may contribute to growing anxiety of perfectionism in PSE students

Social media may play a prominent role in the rise of perfectionism among postsecondary students, according to a study of Canadian, British, and American students. The study found that young adults feel that they must meet certain standards based on what they see on social media, which, according to the study, leads to a debilitating sense of perfectionism based on the perceived expectations of others. “These findings suggest that recent generations of college students have higher expectations of themselves and others than previous generations,” said study co-author Thomas Curran in a statement. “Today’s young people are competing with each other in order to meet societal pressures to succeed and they feel that perfectionism is necessary in order to feel safe, socially connected and of worth.” Montreal Gazette

Police launch probe into email that threatened Sheridan students, staff with physical harm

Police are investigating after a “disturbing email” that threatened physical harm to Sheridan College students and staff earlier this month. An email from Kathryn Cameron, director of campus safety, security and emergency management at Sheridan, told the school’s community that a number of students and staff at the Trafalgar Campus in Oakville received a disturbing email from an individual “threatening them with physical harm.” Cameron added that this individual had previously visited Sheridan, staying at the Trafalgar residence as a hotel guest for a week in August. Halton Regional Police have launched an investigation into the incident and are checking to see if any students and staff at the Mississauga or Brampton campuses received a similar email.

Canada-India Centre for Excellence at Carleton partners on Indian-Canada internship program

The Canada-India Centre for Excellence at Carleton University recently signed a letter of agreement with the internship and online training platform Internshala to facilitate student internships. India Today reports that the collaboration will create new opportunities for Indian students at Carleton and for Carleton students in India. Internshala will deliver webinars to Carleton students to help them understand how to find an internship in India, while the CICE will connect Internshala with the Startup-Visa program community and incubators, including Carleton's “Lead to Win” incubation centre, with an aim to hiring Indian interns. India Today

Why research might not offer the best chance for success for English PhDs seeking academic jobs

Senior faculty members might be doing PhD students in English a disservice by telling them to “just do research all the time” and to “view everything else as a distraction,” according to the author of a study presented last Friday at the annual meeting of the Modern Language Association. Lead author Beth Seltzer noted that even in the sphere of academic jobs, roughly 75% of MLA job postings published in 2015-16 called for at least one skill that is associated with alt-ac jobs: skills such as public outreach, assessment, administration, and curriculum development. Further, some of these skills were significantly more likely to be listed than were traditional skills such as advanced knowledge of British or American literature. Seltzer added that the study’s findings pose a significant challenge to the notion that performing and publishing more research offers students the best chance at success on the academic job market. Inside Higher Ed